1887

Abstract

Unique morphologies can enable bacteria to survive in their native environment. Furthermore, many bacteria change their cell shape to adapt to different environmental conditions. For instance, some bacteria increase their surface area under carbon or nitrogen starvation. is an abundant human gut species; it efficiently degrades a number of carbohydrates and also supports the growth of other bacteria by breaking down complex polysaccharides. The gut provides a variable environment as nutrient availability is subject to the diet and health of the host, yet how gut bacteria adapt and change their morphologies under different nutrient conditions has not been studied. Here, for the first time, we report an elongated morphology under sugar-limited conditions using live-cell imaging; this elongated morphology is enhanced in the presence of sodium bicarbonate. Similarly, we also observed that sodium bicarbonate produces an elongated-length phenotype in another Gram-negative gut bacterium, . The increase in cell length might provide an adaptive advantage for cells to survive under nutrient-limited conditions.

Funding
This study was supported by the:
  • Julie Biteen , Army Research Office , (Award W911NF‐18‐1‐0339)
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/content/journal/micro/10.1099/mic.0.000924
2020-05-14
2020-06-04
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